1. Michael Busch
Do the Dodgers value Michael Busch? Because they seem to keep blocking him over and over again with their relatively underwhelming offseason moves.
First, Miguel Rojas crowded the infield picture when he was acquired via trade. Then he was signed to a one-year extension. Miguel Vargas being moved to second base clearly showed the Dodgers are more confident in him than Busch, despite the fact Vargas was less than impressive after making his MLB debut. Throw in the addition of Peralta, which further clouds the outfield picture, and Busch is buried at Triple-A.
A single injury can obviously change everything here, but the Dodgers have expressed confidence in so many other prospects/young players this offseason (Vargas, James Outman, Ryan Pepiot, Gavin Stone, Bobby Miller and others) while Busch has been seemingly pushed aside.
Here's where the trade speculation comes in. Busch occupies a 40-man roster spot and hit .274 with an .881 OPS, 87 runs scored, 21 home runs and 79 RBI across 111 Triple-A games last year. He's played first base, second base and left field in the minors. The versatility is promising, but he still needs some work on that side of the ball.
Might he become another team's developmental project now, though? The organization feels like it's higher on Andy Pages, Jorbit Vivas, Eddys Leonard and Jonny DeLuca -- with both Pages and DeLuca being protected from this year's Rule 5 Draft when they were added to the 40-man. Busch was protected too, but that was much more of a no-brainer give his success at Triple-A.
We've heard the least about him, though, and multiple insiders have suspected he could be part of a trade package before Opening Day. The addition of Peralta, which could also push Chris Taylor into more infield reps, might solidify that.